Removing poison ivy during the winter

Asked February 11, 2016, 10:54 AM EST

I have an established poison ivy vine that is growing up one of my trees. 1) Is it advisable to control poison ivy during the winter before spring? 2) The vine is very high up my tree. Will it be effective for me to cut the vine in half or by sections severing it from the part that is in the ground? 3) Should the root be removed? How? 4) Is there a possibility it could grow back even if I remove the root? Thanks.

St. Mary's County Maryland

1 Response

Now is a good time to work on getting rid of your poison ivy. Wearing protective clothing, cut the vine where it comes out of the ground. If you can remove any of the roots without damaging the tree roots using a trowel or shovel, do so. You do not need to remove the vine that is going up the tree. With the roots severed, the vine should die where it is. Wash your clothes and gloves that may have touched the vine. Wash off the shovel and clippers. In the spring there will likely be new growth where you made your cut. Keep the new growth either cut off or sprayed with herbicide such as glyphosate (RoundUp). Do not get any of the glyphosate on any plant that you value. It is the persistence that is going to eliminate the poison ivy. Regularly monitor where you cut the vine at ground level throughout the summer and eliminate new growth. vw